Guerrilla ambush in Colombia kills 10 amid peace talks

At least 10 soldiers are dead and more than a dozen were reportedly injured after Colombia’s largest guerrilla group ambushed a military base in the department of Cauca, less than 50 miles south of Cali, the country’s third-largest city.

Defense Minister Juan Carlos Pinzón confirmed the attack, but not the number of deaths, via Twitter and said he was heading toward the area to lead investigations.

The Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia (FARC) guerrillas have been in peace talks with the government for more than two years and declared a unilateral ceasefire in December. While the ceasefire has been broken on a handful of occasions this is the most serious rupture.

The attack comes amid efforts to deescalate the half-century civil conflict. The government has stopped short of joining the ceasefire, but has halted aerial bombings for more than a month.

“I lament the death of soldiers in Cauca,” President Juan Manuel Santos wrote on Twitter Wednesday. “This is precisely the war we’re trying to end.”